How long will it be until they open a cash-point at the wailing wall? It may seem ridiculous, yet they already have fights there. There at one of the most Holy of Holies, not the actual most Holiest of Holies, maybe not No. 1, but certainly one that has spent many centuries in the chart, not featuring as soon as it was 'released', rather being a slow burner, wailed upon well after and one which itself was then venerated. And there are other religions which have their Holiest of Holies that lead in a rival chart. Anyway, the fights are not ’promoted' and there is no ring or ding or towelling bath robes with enormous pockets, and no microphones hanging mysteriously from the sky.

There will be a man or a firm in Vegas who is recognised as simply the best at lowering the mike:

’It’s gotta be poyfik . . . no screw-ups this B time Bernie . . . I don’t want the ref standing U there reaching up into the sky and all he's got H O is fresh air to grab like N some awful Travolta I S H impoysonayta without the drive and conviction that foyerst drove him into show- business . . .'

’Sure thing Baws, I know, it'll noyva happen again . . .'

There are fights between the different types of people who wish to worship and wail here, some basically don't want others to wail or worship here so they shout and boo and hiss and spit at them. And it can't be easy to pray when someone is booing you; it must be tricky to concentrate and keep the voice in your head steady with eyes closed and the voices outside your head all loud and egging you on. Praying, unlike boxing, is usually done without vocal support, or some flat-nosed {' old Irish guy massaging you roughly: ’. . . come on kid, you gotta really feel the spirit, you gotta really believe . . . here spit the wine into this bucket.’

Boxing, however, is always accompanied by for-and- against shouts of dis/- encouragement that sound fairly similar. When a crowd jeers- cheers, either boxer can feel it is his, and it is, for really the cheers are for the four-legged grappling, writhing, striking shiny sportbeast; they can just revel in the excitement of the noise, must feel fighty no matter who the crowd is for. How else do they get worked up to fight a man they

4 THE lIST 6——20 Jul 2000


have not had an argument with yet?

It is hard to protest about boxing; sometimes people sneak into the arena who are anti-boxing and boo the fighters, but this just looks like they are against one of the boxers themselves and so really for the other one, and they become part of a perceived pro-boxing lobby. One effective way to object was to stage orgies in the hotels where the fights took place.

Back at the wailing wall when people are praying and their eyes are closed and they are praying for what they pray for, and the other people are behind them jeering then it must be a direct answer, fuel, to what to pray for.

'lron Mike’, who got his name from the time when he worked in 3 Laundry bringing in lots of business from the gym (blood stained shorts, dusty towels, large dressing gowns with saliva in the hood et cetera), comes to fight and people are against it and it is partly because he is a convicted criminal and would appear partly because he is only

here to fight. ‘Purpose N of visit, please?’ 'To injure to the point of

U I S incapacitation a large D

man who is pale with a name that does not suggest victory. Shopping.’

Then what happens, the fucking man fights the fight with the promoter, there are all horrible gruesome front pages of Tyson looking horror- filled; like he may as well be as ugly as people feel he is, and when he's holding a baby, will he eat it? Where did they get a baby? Is there a mother somewhere with a few hundred quid extra she is trying to spend as quick as she can on new clothing and wine and biannual luxuries, laundering the money back into something forwardly good instead of it being a strange spare crust from an unholy loaf?

Then the fight is over in

a few seconds, fantastic! No, then he finished it too quickly; poor boxers, always fighting, and always praying.

ROlSlll l.‘.((.l0SKE

Famespotting Duncan Rennie

Who he?

Rennie has just graduated from Edinburgh College of Art. His two minutes of genius My Gir/friend’s A Wizard (pictured) was a wee highlight of the degree show graduation films. Written by and starring long-time collaborator Will Andrews, the film tells just how dangerous, random and frustrating it can be dating a W:zard, especrally if in the course of an argument she tells you to ‘go away’. Now out of art school and recovering from Glastonbury, he has been approached by Film UK (the Edinburgh International Film Festival's industry arm, formerly NBX) which, he says, ’wants to do something wrth my film'. Where else will we know him from? You might not, unless you saw the gloriously titled short film Gangsters With High Voices. He’s also a Jumper-Outer. 'Scuse me? Jumper-Outer? One of those people that hide in dark closes and leap out on unsuspecting tourists late at night, dressed as a ghoulish thing. It's part of one of Edinburgh's Walking Tours, not just some bizarre craving he can only fulfill at midnight by a full moon or anything. What's next for Rennie and Andrews? Rennie says: 'I want to work and collaborate wrth Will as much as I can. I want us to continue making little strange avant-garde films that don’t close too much off to the audience.’ Given that Wizard only cost £600 and was shot in two days, this doesn’t seem unreasonable. Rennie says: 'we just chat and all these daft ideas come up, then I take them away and make them good,’ at which they both dissolve into hysterics and Rennie's final word on the matter is, 'I hear Debbie McGee's interested in the lead in My Girlfriend's A Wizard 2.’ (Adele Hartley)